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Letter: Open Debate Needed to Move WD Forward

In this letter to the editor, writer expresses the importance of open dialogue and debate at township meetings.

Letter: Open Debate Needed to Move WD Forward

Dear Editor,

Having been a resident, actively involved (current member of the River Winds Advisory Board) and raising my family in West Deptford for the past 30 years, I have a pretty good understanding of this community.  I have supported and voted for past administrations and have witnessed what has taken place in our local government. Until recently our local government has been a big mystery in West Deptford where decisions, debate and dialogue amongst committee members have taken place behind closed doors.

Now, as a supporter of Mayor Ray Chintall and Committeeman Sam Cianfarini, I have been overly impressed with how our government now operates in the open at our Township meetings. Ray and Sam have brought that open dialogue, open debate and open decision making process to the people of West Deptford. While some say that the township meetings have become a “circus”, then I want this circus in town for as long as I reside in West Deptford.  Actually, to call the meetings as anything other than “American” is doing a disservice to the country we live in.

As a Veteran (U.S.M.C.), defending our freedom is important and to see those freedoms on display by our local government is what our country is all about. Last week at the township meeting there was plenty of dialogue, open debate and passion between the parties about how this township needs to move forward. That sort of debate has not existed in this community prior to Ray and Sam’s election to council.

So before you begin to call our local government a, “Circus”, remember what those quiet, ill-attended and ten minute township meetings over the past twenty plus years have yielded for the residents of West Deptford. We now have spirited debate, exposure to mismanagement of funds, exposure to audit deficiencies, budgets presented to the public, presentations on our redevelopment “deals” and an opportunity to challenge all of our government officials.

Ray and Sam thank you for sparking life into our community and bringing West Deptford back to the residents. Also, for those who think freedom is quiet and behind closed doors you are wrong. Our township meetings are opportunities to discuss how our town is governed and in this town we are finally beginning to hear what freedom sounds like.

William Vankat
West Deptford

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